February 28th, 2018

NDP to introduce legislation on children’s dental care and pharmacare

HALIFAX – The NDP Caucus will introduce legislation today to extend the Children’s Oral Health Program up to age 17. A second bill would provide pharmacare coverage for all children and young people under the age of 25.

“When the NDP was in office, the plan was to increase the age for dental coverage from 14 to 17. One of the first things the Liberals did was reverse this plan, leaving tens of thousands of children without dental coverage,” said NDP Leader Gary Burrill. “Today’s bill would make sure thousands more children have access to basic dental care free of charge.”

Yesterday’s federal budget committed to studying a national pharmacare program. Recently, the Ontario government introduced a children’s pharmacare plan providing coverage to everyone under the age of 25.

“Our public health care system means thousands of people access doctors, nurses, and other processionals without out-of-pocket costs, but what happens when you can’t afford what the doctor prescribes?” said Tammy Martin, NDP spokesperson for Health and Wellness. “People should be able to get the medication they need, when they need it. This bill takes us a step closer to universal pharmacare by making sure no young person has to go without the medications they need.”

The cost of expanding the Children’s Oral Health Program up to the age of 17 would be a little more than $3 million. Based on figures from Ontario, it would cost about $28 million to provide drug coverage to everyone under 25.

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